When the W Hotel in Brisbane opened its doors, it brought with it the debaucherous, unabashed flauntiness that dwells within.
We explored its uniqueness and energy to see whether it lives up to the hype.
When I step out of the taxi at the W Brisbane, I’m instantaneously stunned by the wow factor of the hotel. The luminescent ‘W’ draws you in initially, but then it’s the bright and colourful arrival area that catches the eye.
Ripe with riparian themes in the design, it starts with a staircase of timber river reeds delivering us to the welcome desk and continues through to the carpet pattern in our room, inspired by the shifting tide patterns of the Brisbane River.
Checked in, we’re shown to the moodily lit elevators, and it’s abundantly clear this is no place for minimalists.
The curtains automatically draw back as we enter our Wonderful Room, allowing the sun to pour over its showpiece: a turquoise circular mix bar, topped with a hot pink glass pineapple and an array of mid-sized bottles of booze.
The room snakes from the entrance, past the bathroom with its ‘10-gallon drum tub’ inspired by the Aussie outback, around the end of a king-size bed and into the curved floor-to-ceiling glass.
Along one wall, white panels bring a touch of traditional Queenslander home; opposite is a shimmering print with thin glass poles running along it, channelling mangrove reeds. There are mirrors everywhere.
All this ostentatiousness is new to me; it’s my first initiation into the world of W. On one hand, I love it, on the other, I’ve stepped into the unknown and I’m feeling conscious about my outfit choice.
We glam up and continue to the Living Room bar, which backs onto the adjoining shopping complex, Brisbane Quarter, for a pre-dinner cocktail.
The Living Room Bar evolves from a serene spot for daytime reading or meetings to a lively night scene to mix and mingle. The soundtrack connects the crowd for you to enjoy good conversation and of course, fab cocktails.
Our drinks come with a side of deliciously sweet and salty popcorn that we couldn’t get enough of.
We then head upstairs to level three where the boys from Byron Bay’s Three Blue Ducks made their Queensland debut.
We are graced by spectacular nighttime views over the Brisbane River at Three Blue Ducks. We choose a table by the window with a direct view of QAGOMA lit up on the other side of the river.
The menu is all locally sourced produce showcasing Queensland’s vibrant yet laidback culture with ‘The Ducks’ legendary paddock-to-plate ethos. It changes seasonally, but the quality remains the same no matter when you go.
We start with freshly shucked oysters and finger lime dressing because oysters are always a good idea. For mains, we shared the gnocchi and the 300g scotch fillet steak with a side of roasted garlic and rosemary potatoes. The food was incredible with service to match.
They also have a ‘Ducklings’ menu for all the little ones you might have. We actually shared the frozen chocolate parfait and fresh raspberries dessert from the Ducklings menu because we were SO full but needed that sweet hit!
Three Blue Ducks is also where the hotel breakfast is on, come morning, and it is easily one of the best hotel breakfasts I’ve ever had. The food was phenomenal and there was so much range to choose from. From spanner crab scramble with papaya to the buffet breakfast option, there is something for everyone.
If you like a more relaxed dining option, take the plunge at the psychedelic WET Deck pool and bar on the level four rooftop. The tropical poolside oasis in the heart of the city boasts a resort vibe complete with photo-worthy vistas, bar and pool.
The rooftop bar is the ultimate place for vivid sunsets, handcrafted cocktails, light bites and live DJs. Plus, WET Deck hosts lots of fun events so see what’s on when you plan on staying.
We make ourselves at home visiting the AWAY Spa and leave having reached new levels of relaxation and pampering.
You can also take it up a notch at the FIT gym which has an abundance of cutting-edge fitness equipment.
W Brisbane is situated right on the banks of the Brisbane River in the CBD. It is super close to Queen Street Mall, one of the best things to do in Brisbane, and Brisbane City Hall, which is also the home of the Museum of Brisbane.
Just across the river, you’ll find QAGOMA and Queensland Museum in South Bank’s Queensland Cultural Centre.
A Wonderful Room costs around $450 per night.
Luxury without the stick up its behind, the W is like a hedonistic travel buddy you’d fly to Ibiza with.
We rated: The fact there’s absolutely nothing else like it in Brisbane and the staff were so bubbly and welcoming.
We’d change: The prices aren’t cheap, but you are paying for uniqueness and an experience like no other.
Where: 81 North Quay, Brisbane, Queensland
There’s no such thing as run-of-the-mill when it comes to luxury accommodation options in Brisbane. From enhancing a summer holiday with chic inter...
Leaving city life far behind isn’t hard when Brisbane’s Moreton Island is involved. It’s easy to overlook the simple beauty of Moreton Island; ...
Brisbane sizzles in summer but, there’s plenty of cool spots for a hip dip. Here's 8 swimming venues of note, each with its own story to tell. 1. O...
For the best travel inspiration delivered straight to your door.
Woah this hotel is pretty mad! Looks like a lot of thought has gone into its styling. It’s not exactly my cup of tea but it is very impressive.